We have been asked to be ambassadors for the National Geographic™ STEM educational kits from Bandai, which are a range of experiment-based discoveries that will appeal to both boys and girls. I feel that STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) are really important for our children to learn about – but they can also be some of the most exciting topics to learn, if presented in the right way. I really feel that the National Geographic™ STEM range will achieve this.
National Geographic™ STEM Dig Kits
Take the National Geographic™ STEM Dig Kits perfect for future palaeontologists and biologists as they excavate to discover genuine dinosaur fossils (Dino Dig Kit), real creepy-crawlies (Bug Dig Kit), actual shark teeth (Shark Dig Kit) or dazzling amethyst, quartz, and tiger’s eye gemstones to add to their rock collections (Gemstone Dig Kit). There are also an assortment of mini dig kits including Treasure, Gemstone, Dino Poop, Shark Tooth and Fool’s Gold that are a perfect introduction to the series.
National Geographic™ Real Bug and Dino Fossil Dig Kits
We were sent the National Geographic™ Real Bug and Dino Fossil Dig Kits and took them outside to experiment with one sunny day. Each kit contains a dig brick (with a beautiful relevant design of what will be discovered on the top), 2 excavation tools (1 for digging and a brush), a magnifying glass, Dig Kit Instructions, Guide and Tips, plus two learning guides (one in English and the other translations). Each Dig Kit has 3 things to carefully find and this requires some patience and care to make sure they are not damaged.
The instructions start by explaining that this can get messy and to use some sturdy paper or a newspaper underneath where you are going to work, or that alternatively you can work outside. I would also add to wear clothes that you are comfortable with getting dirty – although everything washed off easily.
Once the specimens have been found they can be brushed down or washed with a little water (which is also suggested to be used if the digging is difficult but my boys did not require it then). Then, using the magnifying class, they were able to identify their discoveries and find more information about them in their learning guides.
The Differences between the National Geographic™ Real Bug and Dino Fossil Dig Kits
The only major differences between the National Geographic™ Real Bug and Dino Fossil Dig Kits is really only the discoveries. The dinosaur specimens are a mosasaur tooth, dino poop and a dino bone; whereas the real bug kit unearths a scorpion, fortune beetle and spiny spider (all inside acrylic like gems) – all of which are clearly labelled and illustrated on the outside of the box, so the children know what they are looking for. Other than that the internal packaging for the bugs was cardboard and the dino fossils plastic. Obviously this has implications on recycling but actually the magnifying glass in the cardboard packaging wasn’t as secure and cracked.
Thoughts on the National Geographic™ Real Bug and Dino Fossil Dig Kits
We really liked the National Geographic™ Real Bug and Dino Fossil Dig Kits. They kept the boys entertained for almost an hour and I love how they were learning and developing without realising (including science, fine motor skills and reading to name a few). This kind of fun way to learn STEM and other skills feeds right into the very core for some of my reasons to home educate.
National Geographic™ Kits (RRP: £9.99) and National Geographic™ Mini Kits (RRP: £4.99)
Dino Fossil Dig Kit is available at Argos for £10 or 2 for £15
Visit www.bandai.co.uk for further information.
Also see The Brick Castle who are also Bandai STEM Ambassadors for their review
We are Bandai STEM Ambassadors and were sent the Dino Fossil and Real Bug Dig Kits for purposes of review. All opinions are honest and my own.